Author Q&A: Louise Marley

Today on Becca's Books, I'm utterly thrilled to be welcoming the wonderful Louise Marley to the blog for an author Q&A with me. I've been following Louise on Twitter for a long time now and keeping up to date with her book releases, and so I couldn't pass up the chance to invite her onto the blog for a good old natter and an imaginary cup of tea. Without further ado, here is Louise Marley herself answering my questions. Happy reading, lovelies!

First of all, could you introduce yourself to readers? Tell us a little bit about you and the books that you write.
Thank you, Becca! I live in beautiful North Wales, with views of lush forests and ruined castles. I love loud music and old spooky houses, which often feature in my books, along with characters who are police officers, as I used to work for the police.

In which genre/genres do you write?
I write romantic comedies, romantic suspense and murder mysteries. I’ve also written short stories for women’s magazines and contributed to the bestselling Sunlounger anthologies.

Tell us about your most recent book, and where can we find it?
My most recent book is Trust Me I Lie.
When Milla Graham arrives in the picture-perfect village of Buckley, she tells everyone she’s investigating the murder of her mother who died eighteen years ago. But there’s already one Milla Graham buried in the churchyard and another about to be found dead in the derelict family mansion.
Obviously she’s lying.
Isn’t she?
You can find it on Amazon:

Are there any particular themes which you try to incorporate within your books?
One theme which frequently occurs within my books is the importance of family and friends. Even if the characters have a horrible family, they usually have good friends!

How do you hope to make readers feel while reading your books?
I want my readers to love my characters as much as I do – even the villains!

If you had to choose three words to describe your most recent book, what would they be?
Lies, fibs and tall tales!

When it comes to creating your characters, are they completely fictional or do you gather ideas from the people you know in real life?
My characters are completely made up. I don’t even use photos of hot actors to inspire me. I’m very boring like that.

How do you choose the settings of your books?
The area where my stories are based is fictional. This originally came about because my first book was all about corruption in the police and, as I worked for the police at the time, I didn’t want anyone thinking I was writing about real life!

Have you visited any of the areas which you’ve written about?
Why Do Fools Fall in Love was set in Bath, where I used to live. It is about the making of a movie and I was inspired by all the film crews who would turn up to make their Jane Austen style costume dramas practically on my doorstep.

Who are some of your favourite authors?
I love Harlan Coben, Jilly Cooper, Anne Stuart and Eloisa James.

Do you like to plan strategically, or do you let the characters lead the way?
I used to be a pantser – until I had to throw away 50,000 words of a book! Now I work out how many words I’m going to need, and how many chapters that would be, and what happens in each chapter, until I have a synopsis of about 20,000 words.

If you could sit down and have lunch with any author, who would you choose and why?
I’d choose Stephen King. I loved his book On Writing, so I’d interrogate him about his plots and where he gets his ideas.

Is there a particular part of the writing process which you enjoy more than others?
I love creating characters and seeing how they spark off each other.

When it comes to the cover of a book, how important do you feel they are?
When I buy a book it is always the cover which catches my attention first. I’m shallow like that!

How do you keep track of your writing progress? Do you use daily word goals? Do you aim to get a set number of chapters written?
I have a ‘progress’ chart where I keep track of chapters I’ve written, the viewpoint of the characters and the number of pages in each chapter, along with notes such as ‘the start needs work’ or ‘this is crap’. I score each chapter out of ten too, so I can immediately identify the ones which need work!

Tell us the top three books you’ve read so far in 2016.
The Duke of Sin by Elizabeth Hoyt
The Rogue Not Taken by Sarah MacLean
A Room Full of Bones by Elly Griffiths

When did your love of writing first begin to blossom?
I’ve always loved writing stories, for as long as I can remember.

How did you celebrate your most recent publication day?
I had a party with my writing group, Novelistas Ink.

What are your thoughts on the book-blogging community?
I think they are amazing. Writing a book review is extremely hard work – I know couldn’t do it – but oh, imagine the TBR pile! Heaven!

Which, if any, other genre would you like to try and write in?
I’d like to write historical romance but I’m too lazy to do the research!

What has been your biggest accomplishment so far in your writing career?
Selling over 40,000 copies of Why Do Fools Fall in Love felt pretty amazing!

Are you working on anything at the moment? If so, tell us a little bit about it.
I have two stories on the go. A sequel to Trust Me I Lie and a romcom.

What was the best piece of advice you ever received?
Don’t compare your first draft with someone else’s published book.

What do you class as a successful writing day?
To actually do some writing! I’m supposed to be a full-time writer but my writing day can consist of marking assignments (I’m a writing tutor), writing blog posts (either for my own blog or guest posts), liaising with book bloggers, answering queries from readers, updating my website, sourcing images for my blog, arranging cover design, editing, formatting, proof-reading. It’s heaven to just write!

Writing in an apartment in New York City or writing in a cottage in the English countryside?
A cottage buried in the countryside – but with wifi and satellite TV!

Writing with a cup of tea or writing with a cup of coffee?
Always, always coffee. I treat myself to one mug of Java a day but, apart from that, it’s decaff unfortunately.

Writing with a sandwich or writing with a cupcake?
Neither! I can’t bear crumbs in my keyboard!

Writing with music or writing in silence?
I can’t work without music. I create a playlist for each book.

Writing outside in the sunshine or writing inside as the snow falls?
When I’m in the writing zone there could be a hurricane going on outside and I wouldn’t even notice. However, I do prefer the sunshine!

And lastly, if someone told you that they wanted to be a writer, what would you tell them?
Brilliant - but don’t give up the day job because you’ll need the income, the interaction with ‘real’ people, and the inspiration of meeting new people and visiting new places.

About the author
Louise Marley writes romantic comedy and romantic suspense, and sometimes she mixes the two. She lives in Wales, surrounded by fields of sheep, and has a beautiful view of Snowdon from her study window.

Her first published novel was Smoke Gets in Your Eyes, which was a finalist in Poolbeg's Write a Bestseller competition. She has also written articles for the Irish press and short stories for women's magazines such as Take a Break and My Weekly. Previously, Louise worked as a civilian administrative officer for the police.

Louise's books have spent a total of 7 months in the Amazon top 100 (UK). Three of her books have been #1 bestsellers in romantic suspense, and Smoke Gets in Your Eyes was #1 in romance.

In addition to her own books, Louise contributes to the hugely popular Sunlounger anthologies. She is a member of the Romantic Novelists Association, the Society of Authors and a group of bestselling authors known as Novelistas Ink.

You can find Louise Marley on Facebook | Twitter |


  1. Fabulous interview. I'm loving Trust Me I Lie. Great to know more about Louise.

    1. Thank you so much for reading our Q&A, Luccia! X